Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The EU (Lexi)Con Game

It seems that the EU has been busy:
EU officials are working on what they call a "lexicon" for public communication on terrorism and Islam, designed to make clear that there is nothing in the religion to justify outrages like the September 11 attacks or the bombings of Madrid and London.
According to the article, though the project is just starting, some of the terms that need to be modified are known:

Old TermAccording to the EU Lexicon
Islamic TerrorismTerrorists who abusively invoke Islam
JihadSpiritual struggle

Of course, there is already another lexicon in use--the one the media uses. As a matter of fact, 2 new additions have been made to the media lexicon.

Meryl Yourish notes that the AP has introduced the term "criticism" as the correct word used to describe a speech where the leader of one country calls for the destruction of another, as in:
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad today renewed his criticism of Israel, calling it a “fake regime” that cannot continue to exist.
Another word that has been introduced--pointed out by Little Green Footballs--is "dissident," as in:
Saudi dissident Osama bin Laden in an undisclosed place inside Afghanistan.
"Dissident" will join such words as "militant", "activist", and "freedom fighter" in describing the various catagories that formerly were subsumed under the vague term "terrorist."

This may cause some confusion, since Natan Sharansky refers to President Bush as a "Dissident President" and uses the word in a context such as:
Now that President Bush is increasingly alone in pushing for freedom, I can only hope that his dissident spirit will continue to persevere.
Another problem may be a possible conflict between the EU and media lexicons. If "Islamic Terrorism" will now be referred to as "Terrorists who abusively invoke Islam," the media--which no longer uses the term "terrorist"--will have to choose among:
  • "Dissidents who abusively invoke Islam"
  • "Freedom fighters who abusively invoke Islam"
  • "Activists who abusively invoke Islam"
  • "Militants who abusively invoke Islam"
We assume that the media will think of something.

Some of the most well known terms used by the media are listed below:

Old Term
According to the Media Lexicon
Freedom Fighter
A call for the destruction of another country
Disputed Territories
Occupied Territories
Fire missle
Launch rocket
Gun battle

The EU is somewhat late in comparison with the media in launching their lexicon. It may be that they have taken their cue from Hamas.

Back in March, Arutz Sheva reported on Hamas' government guidelines:
The guidelines also demand the return of all the Arabs who fled Israel during the War of Independence, together with their children, grandchildren and subsequent generations, and justify continued terrorist attacks on civilians. The guidelines read, "opposition in its various forms is a legitimate right of the Palestinian people for the purpose of ending the occupation." The word "opposition,” in the Hamas lexicon, is a euphemism for terrorism. [emphasis added]
I actually hope that the EU is successful in their attempt to "make clear that there is nothing in the religion to justify outrages like the September 11 attacks or the bombings of Madrid and London."

Maybe then the EU can work on making it clear to the Moslem world that there is nothing in the West nor in Israel to justify Moslems abusively invoking Islam either.

Crossposted at Israpundit

Technorati Tag: and and and and and .


Mottel said...

Europeans will never change . . .

Daled Amos said...

Europe cannot afford not too.
They defeated Islamism before--but it was easier when it was an all-out battle.